If you saw the cover of this week’s Batman Odyssey and said to yourself “This looks to be the best Batman story, yet!” do society a favor and don’t breed.
Let’s break down what happened recently before we dive into this issue. When we last saw Batman he was explaining the crackpot “Expanding Earth Theory” long advocated by the book’s author Neil Adams. The core of the earth is in fact filled with dinosaurs and giant bats and all kinds of life long thought to be extinct. The evolved beings capable of abstract thought like Neanderthal Jamroth Bok listen to the radio frequencies we broadcast on the earth’s outer surface, thus explaining how he found out about Batman and decided to become the underworld Batman himself. Talia Al Ghul is being held hostage in the underworld somewhere, as is Jamroth’s girlfriend. They could be…jeez. I literally feel my brain turning to mush as I type this. My fingers cramp up with resistance to punching out the keys to this much stupid…they aren’t being held by the Neanderthals or dinosaurs (Batman ruled them out in the last issue) so that leaves the assassins, Ra’s Al Ghul’s oilers, magicians, aliens, and the old gods. If you read all of that and it actually brought you up to speed, then…wow.
Issue #3 starts off with Batman, Jamroth, and dinosaur robin flying giant bats and then it cuts to Robin fighting off a bunch of talking critters until he is aided by Deadman (wielding a frying pan)…so it reads like Neil Adams dumped a pile of DC action figures and dinosaur toys in front of one of his grand children and wrote down everything the little tikes did as a comic book script. “It’s gold!”
But it doesn’t just stop with the dinosaurs and the hollow earth… this issue actually has Batman meeting a wizard (with the blue robe and pointy hat covered in stars…he’s called a “jazz magician”) and 2 little green aliens—at the same time. He meets them at the same time.
Batman, the aliens, the wizard, the evolved dinosaur Robin, and Neanderthal Batman Jamroth Bok work out a plan to take on Sensei’s army (which is attacking Ra’s Al Ghul’s men…I think that’s what was going on). And so we’re treated to a battle scene in which Neanderthal Batman Jamroth Bok fires a heavy machine gun and shouts that he is an “Equal opportunity destroyer” while Batman refers to himself repeatedly as the “weak sister” in the fight. But then…mind is mush again, let me take a breath…Batman discovers a unique pocket of low gravity and discovers that it gives him super strength. He starts flipping tanks and literally bowling one bad guy at another platoon.
The jazz magicians are seen sinking a tank full of bad guys into the earth and Batman realizes that people die in war and he is shaken up by this. Luckily, the battle ends immediately after and he tells everyone to not kill whoever is left. Sensai arrives and is giant sized, but he shrinks down and challenges Batman to MORTAL KOMBAT. They fight, Batman thinks he sees a glimmer of respect in Sensai’s eyes, then he notices that he never retracted his arm fins… ya know? Those three spike things on his gauntlets? Yeah, I didn’t know they could be retracted either. Batman apologizes and the fins recede into his glove in that panel, but Neil Adams continued drawing them in all proceeding panels anyway. Whatever. Batman gets a few shots in and Sensei says the fight’s over, he’s learned everything he needed. Batman stops and listens to Sensei go on and on about how bad Batman has lost and how he had 3 chances to win, but all Batman did was lose, because he’s a loser and losing is what losers do best. Batman agrees and Sensei says that he will kill Batman…later. Batman let’s Sensei walk away. Really, he just watches the main bad guy walk away and then Bruce Wayne, the narrator of the story closes out the issue by saying “I missed Robin”.
To be continued.
So you came for a review, but what you got was a summary of the whole comic. Well, I can’t think of a better way to criticize this book and show just what a train wreck it is than holding a mirror up to it. It’s the worst Batman comic on shelves right now and it could be the worst Batman story of all time.